Monday, 23 July 2012

Time Stands Still

Fabrica and &Foam: Still Lights series
Time Stands Still, clock (Giorgia Zanellato, Italy)

Time Stands Still © Alberto Ferretto
This simple oak wood clock seems based on, but is entirely in contrast with, the more traditional old-world grandfather clock. You know the ones. You find them in period dramas, looming ominously in the hallway of some Victorian town house, their heavy ticking pendulum the only sound in a stifling atmosphere of embroidery, big moustaches and sexual repression.

Product designer Giorgia Zanellato's version sweeps away all these brooding associations with Time Stands Still, her timepiece that is, and is not, there. Although it stands over a metre and a half tall and is made of oak, it is both airy yet compact. In keeping with the Still Lights concept, the clock face is hidden behind smoky mirrored glass and only becomes visible once the light is switched on, which is the real function of the mock pendulum that hangs underneath. Eight LEDs, supplied by project partner Philips, are positioned in a circle to suggest the clock face, unifying the three elements of light, subject and frame, none of which works without the other.

Time Stands Still, early design plan © Fabrica

I think what really makes this, and the other pieces in the collection though, is the addition of a brightly coloured fabric power cord. Time Stands Still uses a fluorescent green cord, which appears stitched into one of the legs, adding a freshness and youth to the ensemble.

Time Stands Still, early design plan © Fabrica

But don't chuck out all your chintz yet. There's nothing stopping you matching this with the odd stuffed albino weasel, or a teardrop crystal candelabra. You could even grow and wax a healthy thatch of facial hair on your upper lip. But, for now at least, this clock belongs very much in the present. And, as they say, there's no time like it.

Jonathan Crawford

You can see Time Stands Still and the other products in the series at &Foam until 21 October 2012.

Time Stands Still, early design plan © Fabrica


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